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Real estate pro offers advice on those hard-to-sell homes

By: Kelly Leighton on in

If you have that house on the market that just isn’t selling, Matt Parker, real estate professional and author of three real estate books, is here to help.

First, if your homeowners are staying in the home they are trying to sell, Parker suggested if they can afford to get out first, they should. If they can’t, make sure personal touches, such as photos, are not displayed, and keep the family pet out of the house during showings, he advised.

“Approach the condition of the home as a hotel would be, neutral,” said Parker. “It is tempting to get personal with the sellers, assuaging their love of their decor and tastes. But, the process is about buyers feeling comfortable in a potential space, not sellers enjoying their lifestyle. If you do it correctly, it doesn’t take long.”

While preparing to put their home on the market, some owners grow frustrated or tired, Parker said. “They just throw their hands up and say ‘I am not cleaning those gutters.’ Sellers have to remember, it doesn’t matter how tired they are, it matters how buyers feel in their home. Take the time to prepare your home correctly for the market, it will make the difference financially, and, from a stress standpoint.”

As for sprucing up homes, Parker said, in his experience, some sellers try to give buyers a “paint allowance.”

“This has never worked in the history of real estate,” he said jokingly. “Really, it doesn’t work. Buyers want move-in ready, not ‘I think this would be fun to prep, paint and then move in.’ It’s very easy and fast to modernize your home with gray and white paints and trim. It can add a real classy touch to your home. Don’t ever use atypical colors, or, colors that lend themselves to preferential taste, like pink.”

And what are Parker’s top tips? “Use professional photos, make sure the listing is listed on all MLS sites and all relevant non-MLS sites,” he said.


Comments (1)


  • Aaron Gray   February 3, 2017 at 6:15 am

    The one thing that stood out most to me was the contradiction, while pointing out the need for sellers to be mindful of buyers, the property was referred to as the seller’s home rather than their house. Part of helping the seller detach begins with this very word choice. A home is where you build a family and create memories, and that is not being sold. This could be best understood from the condo mindset, the home is the space between the walls, not the walls themselves.

    Beyond this observation the points mentioned were very basic, ones which I believe most agents are familiar with. I expected to read a few not so well-known gems.

    Reply to Aaron Gray

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